Mailers Face Prospect of Permanent Rate Increase
WASHINGTON, DC—The mailing and printing industries suffered a hard loss late last week when the Senate committee on homeland security and government affairs voted 9-1 to advance the Postal Reform Act of 2013 to the Senate floor.
A last-minute amendment from Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) to maintain the current pricing structure was soundly rejected by the committee. Thus, as currently constituted, the Senate reform bill makes permanent the 7 percent exigent rate increase, and also gives the U.S. Postal Service power to set future rates. The mailing industry has filed an appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals; a process that could take months.
The reform measure is still very fluid, with ample time remaining to make changes to the bill before it reaches the Senate for a vote. The House of Representatives is also working on its own version of postal reform.